Saturday, September 30, 2017

NBA ISSUES MEMO To ALL 30 TEAMS On NATIONAL ANTHEM PROTOCOL & COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT!!!

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Friday, September 29, the NBA sent a memo to all 30 NBA Teams detailing NBA Commissioner ADAM SILVER's expectations of player behavior during the presentation of the UNITED STATES FLAG and the STAR-SPANGLED BANNER!!!

The memo also encourages players to be vocal on issues that they believe to be important, and outlines venues of team, community, media, and, national engagement for communicating their concerns on these issue issues.

Courtesy of the really good people at the WASHINGTON POST Newspaper, here is the FULL TEXT of the official NBA MEMO: NATIONAL ANTHEM PROTOCOL - NEXT STEPS: BUILDING STRONGER, SAFER COMMUNITIES:

TO: NBA BOARD OF GOVERNORS, TEAM PRESIDENTS, GENERAL MANAGERS
FROM: MARK TATUM, DEPUTY COMMISSIONER & CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER
CC: LEAGUE OFFICE
DATE: SEPTEMBER 29, 2017
RE: NEXT STEPS: BUILDING STRONGER, SAFER COMMUNITIES
As a follow-up to our discussions at this week’s Board of Governors meetings, this document outlines suggested steps each team could take as we prepare for the start of the season and continue to develop impactful community programs.
I. ENGAGING PLAYERS AND SENIOR LEADERSHIP
If you have not done so already, we suggest organizing discussions between players, coaches, general managers and ownership to hear the players’ perspectives.
One approach would be for team leadership to review existing team and league initiatives and encourage players to share their thoughts and ideas about them. Following those conversations, teams could develop plans prior to the start of the regular season for initiatives that players and senior leadership could participate in, such as:
· Hosting Community Conversations with youth, parents, community leaders and law enforcement about the challenges we face and our shared responsibility to create positive change.
· Creating “Building Bridges Through Basketball” programs that use the game of basketball to bring people together and deepen important bonds of trust and respect between young people, mentors, community leaders, law enforcement and other first responders.
· Highlighting the importance of mentoring with the goal of adding 50,000 new mentors to support young people through our PSA campaign.
· Engaging thought leaders and partners. A variety of experts, speakers and partner organizations are available to players and teams as you continue these conversations and develop programming.
· Establishing new and/or enhancing ongoing team initiatives and partnerships in the areas of criminal justice reform, economic empowerment and civic engagement.
II. OPENING WEEK
As we approach opening week, each team could explore ways to use their first home game as an opportunity to demonstrate your commitment to the NBA’s core values of equality, diversity, inclusion and serve as a unifying force in the community, including:
· A joint address to fans featuring a player or coach prior to the National Anthem. This could include a message of unity and how the team is committed to bringing the community together this season.
· A video tribute or PSA featuring players, community leaders, faith leaders and team leadership speaking about the issues they care about and photos from past community events.
III. KEY MESSAGES
 These are difficult and nuanced issues.

· We support and encourage players to express their views on matters that are important to them.
· The NBA has a rule that players, coaches and trainers stand respectfully for the anthem. The league office will determine how to deal with any possible instance in which a player, coach or trainer does not stand for the anthem. (Teams do not have the discretion to waive this rule).
· Our team’s focus remains on unity and collective action that leads to meaningful change in society. The players have embraced their roles in those efforts and we are proud of the work they do in our communities.
· We believe sports are a unifier and this is an opportunity for the NBA to once again lead by its core values of equality, inclusion and unity and to bridge divides and bring people together.
-CCG

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